Zak attack extends streak

SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:18 AM ET

Zak Stebner couldn't finish off the hat-trick.

But the veteran defenceman helped the Calgary Hitmen finish off the host Hurricanes in Lethbridge Sunday afternoon.

Stebner scored a pair of goals as the Hitmen skated to their eighth straight victory with a 6-2 triumph over the 'Canes.

"I've had two goals three times in my career," said Stebner, who last potted a pair in Prince George Jan. 3 when he was a member of the Kamloops Blazers.

"I just can't bury that hat-trick goal."

Stebner, who has a plus-10 rating during the team's eight-game streak, said he had a simple plan Sunday.

"I just put pucks on the net, and a couple of them happened to go in."

Brandon Kozun scored for the fourth straight game and added a pair of assists while Tyler Fiddler, Giffen Nyren and Jimmy Bubnick also found the back of the net for the Hitmen (40-16-2).

Wingers Kris Foucault and Tyler Shattock had a pair of helpers each, and goaltender Michael Snider made 22 saves for his 14th win of the season.

Hitmen head coach Mike Williamson was happy with the road effort.

"Snider made some good saves when he needed to, and we scored some goals early," Williamson said.

The winning streak will be put to the test Monday afternoon with the Brandon Wheat Kings -- the last team to beat the Hitmen -- visiting the Dome (2 p.m., Fan 960).

"We didn't want to look past Lethbridge, because they're a hard-working team," Williamson said.

"(Brandon) will be a good measuring stick.

"Both Brandon and ourselves are going well right now.

"It should be a great game."

The Hitmen have won 11 of the past 12 games but have been unable to gain ground on the Wheaties, who have gone 10-0-1 in their last 11 tilts.

The teams last met Jan. 29 at the Dome, and the Hitmen blew a 3-1 third-period lead in a 6-3 loss.

"We played so well for 50 minutes the last time we played them," Williamson said. "But, obviously, the wheels fell off after that."

There will be no let up this time, Stebner insisted.

"Definitely not," he said. "We'll have the pedal down the whole time."

The Hitmen special teams have played a large role in the club's recent hot streak.

Both the powerplay (27.4%, 2nd) and the penalty kill (86.3%, 1st) are among the league's best.

The Wheaties' special teams aren't a s strong with their powerplay sitting ninth and the penalty kill 19th.

"They're a good skating team," Stebner said. "That's one of the areas where we'll have to outwork them and capitalize on our opportunities."

The Wheat Kings beat the Tigers 5-1 in Medicine Hat Sunday night.

Defenceman Colby Robak, who leads the league with a plus/minus of plus-43, led the way with two goals and an assist. Centre Brayden Schenn also had three points.

SCOTT.FISHER@SUNMEDIA.CA


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